Kuehne+Nagel and Lufthansa Cargo drive change with paperless lanes connecting Europe and Asia

We are currently going through a wave of digital transformation and growing environmental awareness, which has made reducing paper consumption and streamlining operations more pronounced than ever. In light of the same, Kuehne+Nagel and Lufthansa Cargo have joined forces to introduce an innovative concept: the establishment of “paperless lanes” connecting Europe and Asia.

This strategic collaboration aims to eliminate the cumbersome load of physical paperwork while enhancing the efficiency of the entire air freight process. The benefits extend beyond operational streamlining, with a clear focus on sustainable practices within the air freight industry.

During the initial phases of the pilot program, a remarkable milestone was achieved – accomplishing 100% paperless shipments for general cargo on the Germany-Hong Kong route. However, this initiative goes beyond the mere implementation of electronic air waybills; it also extends to encompass accompanying documents and paper pouches. As progress continues, the plan is to expand these paperless lanes to encompass additional routes, ultimately constructing a comprehensive paperless corridor between Europe and Asia for general cargo, rendering traditional paper-based transport documentation obsolete.

Both participating companies are enthusiastic about the transformative potential of this pilot project. Through the complete integration of paperless cargo within the corridor, a path is being paved towards a more sustainable and efficient future in the realm of logistics.

In addition to the positive effect of paperless handling, which primarily saves time and gains efficiency, a purely digitally supported process also offers further potential for automation in order to reach the best possible transparency and data quality for our customers around the globe. We as Kuehne+Nagel are highly committed to further expanding our digital ambitions on the way to a fully digitized air freight process”.

Kolja Mahler-Wingen, Vice President Air Logistics Operations Germany, Kuehne+Nagel

“We see great opportunities in this initiative as it supports all participants in pushing their handling efficiencies as well as increasing data availability and transparency throughout their network. The transition to a paperless environment will significantly reduce processing times plus complexity and offers just in time shipment status information. However, it will only be a first step towards a fully digitalized air freight future; especially accompanying documentation of special cargo will come into our focus soon enough.”

Dr. Jan-Wilhelm Breithaupt, Vice President Global Fulfillment Management, Lufthansa Cargo

Embrace the Change

In a call to action, both Kuehne+Nagel and Lufthansa Cargo extend an invitation to fellow industry players to join them in eliminating unnecessary paper documents. Logistics companies interested in participating in the “paperless corridor” can seamlessly engage by adopting the electronic Air Way Bill (eAWB) Single Process and selecting the Freight Special Handling Code (EAW) for all general cargo shipments, ensuring a seamless transition to paperless delivery to the airline.

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